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Old 01/24/2007, 05:31 PM   #1
StephM33
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Lionfish advice

Looking for some advice on a Volitan Lionfish. We have a 96g fish only tank, and are looking at purchasing a baby Lionfish from the LFS. My questions are:

1. How quickly do they grow? Our current tank would not be suitable for a full grown fish but we are planning to upgrade to a 180 or more within the next year.

2. If kept properly fed are they likely to eat other fish? I guess I am most concerned about the Mandarin Goby, one smallish clownfish, and the feeder shrimp (which is fairly large).

I know there are no guarantees, but I'm looking for some general advice based on your experiences. Am I just tempting fate??

Thanks in advance,
Steph


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Old 01/24/2007, 05:45 PM   #2
EdKruzel
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The Mandarin has toxic skin and if eaten will kill (or at least make a lion very sick) your lion.
Small anything (that can fit in their large mouths) will be preyed upon.
You need to make compatible purchases for mature sized fish.
The P. volitan is the largest of the lions and can make an easy meal of most clowns especially without a host anemone.

If you have one of the larger species of clown, such as a Maroon, Tomato or Clarks, then it is possible to purchase a small dwarf species or even a nice P. antennata.


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Old 01/24/2007, 05:54 PM   #3
BurntOutReefer
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even the small one could be trouble....count your shrimp gone....
They grow based on how much you feed them....(based on water temp/metabolism)....but they and and will grow fast.

If you are intent on lions, then IMO... the Volitan is the way to go.
Beautiful, eye catching Reef safe (as far as corals) fish....


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Old 01/24/2007, 05:57 PM   #4
davocean
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I'd stick w/ a dwarf.
They'll eat anything that fits in it's mouth, and they're all mouth!
The volitan I had probably would have eaten the mandarin....and died.
Eating machine!


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Old 01/24/2007, 06:52 PM   #5
jpitts101
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dont lions generally starve?? not starve as far as eating but not eating the right foods. most people think its ok to feed a lion golfish and freshwater feeders when generally you can starve a lion by doing so. im not a pro but i believe you have to feel them saltwater fish or train them to eat frozen. you may want to check that out before buying too. just a thought.


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Old 01/24/2007, 08:33 PM   #6
piscivorous
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yeah...if you really want a lion...get rid of everything else.....the volitans are my favorite and have been since I was like 5 years old. Someday I plan to have a 220 gallon just to keep a volitans and a few other goodies. They'll eat anything they can fit in their mouths...and their mouths get surprisingly big for the size of their body. Don't feed them goldfish, but do some research on a "proper" lionfish diet. The best thing to do early on is train them to feed on frozen foods...you may need to start them off with live stuff, but you'll want to get them away from the live foods as soon as possible. There is lots of info on them so just do your research before hand. It is good you are looking at the 180 too....as they they get almost as wide as they do long....looking at 18" from what I've read...I saw a 9" volitans recently......I couldn't take my eyes off of it....I've seen plenty of other beautiful and rare fish...beautiful angles etc....but I still consider the volitans to be the most stunning and beautiful fish.


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Old 01/24/2007, 08:57 PM   #7
coreef2006
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I had two lions in my 180 (both about 5 in long) I alos had a 5 in grouper, he ate a 1.5 inch clown within 2 hours of putting him in the tank. I also had emerald crabs and the lion left them alone. But I feed them freeze dried shrimp and some frozen fish and they grow pretty quick, and seemed very healthy, and very tame, feed them by hand. Only reason I don't have them is due my tank tank being poisoned by bleach from a piece of coral. I would say if you have small fish, they would probably eat them. When there hungry they eat!


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Old 01/24/2007, 10:06 PM   #8
StephM33
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Thank you everyone. I also found a great thread specifically on Lionfish on the Fish Only Forum, and between that and the feedback you've given here, I think we've made our decision to wait until we upgrade to the larger tank, and then we can think about making the smaller tank devoted to the Lion, and ensure that all the species in the tank are suitable. (we really wouldn't have cried if the damsels became food, but we certainly don't want the shrimp, clown or especially the Mandarin to become dinner!)

From all the research I've done over the last few hours it seems that the Lion is friendly and quite passive, and generally only ends up eating a fish that strays right in front of it while it's hungry. They certainly don't seem to chase any species around, it's more like how a toad will catch a fly.

We also don't want the Lion to completely dominate the tank, and based on how quickly everyone is saying they can grow, it looks as though that may happen before we are ready with the larger tank.

So our "final answer" is that in the spirit of tank harmony we will make ourselves wait for this gorgeous fish until the timing is right.

thanks everyone!
Steph


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